Feeling overwhelmed by a huge living room?

It’s definitely not the worst problem to have. Decorating big spaces can be just as challenging as decorating a tiny space, but it can be a lot more fun.

You have more options to choose from as far as furniture and paint colors go — even your choice of lighting, artwork, and accessories is expanded when you have more area to work with.

How can you go about decorating a large living room in a way that maximizes the space you have while still leaving you with a homey room the whole family can hang out in?

The best living room designs are simple, tasteful and arranged to emphasize the space without leaving you feeling lost in your own house.

Common Mistakes to Avoid When Decorating Large Spaces

Large spaces can easily make you feel swallowed, small or bored. Here are some common mistakes you should avoid when trying to decorate a big space.

First of all, don’t assume you can shove in every piece of furniture you’ve ever owned just because it will fit. Big rooms need to be styled to allow flow throughout the space, and placing furniture haphazardly will disrupt this.

Likewise, don’t place all your furniture along the walls. This creates dead space and will give your living this weird vibe like visitors are standing in the middle of a gladiatorial arena.

Another common mistake is style choice. Just because you have a big room to work with doesn’t mean you don’t have to choose a theme — this includes color, decor and lighting. Don’t try and turn your big room into lots of disconnected little rooms. This can give the appearance of a cramped space, even if you have a huge area.

Having a large room means having the freedom to go really bold. You can use dark and bright colors more in a big space than in a small one. The same goes for accessories. Don’t skimp, but don’t overdo it either.

Large Living Room Decorating Ideas that Work Across the Board

There are a few things to keep in mind when brainstorming how to decorate a living room. All of this wonderful space means more room to romp in, but it needs to be beautiful as well.

1. Adding an Anchor

An anchor is exactly what it sounds like — something to tie the room together and hold it in place. This can be done by adding a furniture centerpiece (not necessarily in the center of the room) that works cohesively with all the different styles in the room.

An anchor doesn’t just have to be furniture, though. It can be standardized flooring, paint, or even artwork. Stylized patterns on different textiles can draw the eye to similarities. Curtains are also an oft-overlooked way to both spice up the room and draw it together.  Choose a common and bright theme for your drapes to anchor the area. They don’t have to be uniform across the room but choose common colors. For more inspiration, read Home Guides’ in-depth article on how to create anchors.

2. Breaking up the Space

All that space is intimidating. But you can break it up into smaller areas, as long as they stay connected through a common theme. One idea is to have several smaller-scale seating arrangements instead of one massive one (don’t you dare install that huge, hulking sectional in front of a 6-foot wide television).

You can have one arrangement for eating, another for lounging, maybe a desk. Break up wall space with different colors of paint or patterns. Artwork is also a must-have to make sure your walls don’t get monotonous. Add a big piece of art to a major wall and a few smaller pieces around the rest of the space to draw the eye in different directions. Vogue has an interesting article with great ideas on how to break up the room.

3. Getting Creative with the Lighting

Hopefully, your big room has some big windows. Even if it doesn’t, you’re in luck. Big spaces naturally feel brighter than small ones, especially if you’ve added some lighter-colored paint and popping accent pieces. Lighting is more about ambiance than brightness. In a big room, putting ambiance lights to establish the mood you are aiming for can be difficult to do.

Consider overhead lighting first. Get something bright but not overwhelming. It’s likely you won’t be using the overhead very much, as explained in this article by Apartment Therapy. During the time you use the room you’re more likely to be utilizing softer light like table lamps or sconces, so invest in some of those.

Make sure lamps and other light fixtures cast a soft glow that allows you to see but that doesn’t create a glare on the television or your workspace.

Last of all, make sure you have fun with it! You’re lucky to have all that space, so get your creative juices flowing and take advantage of it.

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